Impacts of Rising Water Demands in the Juba and Shabelle River Basins on Water Availability in South Somalia
Somalia has frequently been affected by droughts, famines and water-related humanitarian crises. Water is scarce and the only perennial streams, the Juba and Shabelle rivers, are transboundary with river flows mainly originating from the Ethiopian highlands. In both riparian countries water demands are projected to increase. This paper reveals the impact of rising regional water abstractions on stream flows by illustrating sectoral demands and joining them into scenarios of medium and high population and economic growth. These scenarios are associated to the time horizons of 2035 and 2055 respectively. The scenarios disclose alarming trends especially for the Shabelle River: In the medium and high growth scenarios, water demands surpass the available river flows by 200 and 3500 hm3, respectively. The calculated deficits partly derive from conflicting assumptions about river flows by the two main riparian countries, an obstacle to any integrated planning efforts and sustained regional development.